Archive for November, 2010

Art and Politics

Posted in Uncategorized on November 29, 2010 by rehirst

I sort of feel like all art is political. Artists capture the world, as they see it, at the time. That capturing makes some sort of statement, whether they have turned it into something that is completely skewed into abstract form or not. Even some of the earliest famous artists are ones that were commissioned by Kings and other rules to paint their pictures, instantly making them a political statement. I guess the thing that comes to mind the most for me in regards to political art is folk song.. and protest music. I took a class on music and politics a few years ago. There are a ton of musicians who wrote songs to push their political stance, which is predominately for peace. I know there were a lot of songs written in the Civil Rights era by the Freedom Singers. They wrote new lyrics to the tune of American folk songs. Also musicians like Bob Dylan and Pete Seeger and Phil Ochs wrote songs around the Vietnam War and the emotions that came then. Someone everyone knows about is John Lennon and his political songs/agenda. The music in the 1960s in general was fueled by political messages.



Art & Politics

Posted in Uncategorized on November 14, 2010 by nattier

Politics have been making their presence known in art for centuries and is very influencial in many artist’s work.  I am not a political person myself, but I am intrigued by the work of Banksy.  Banksy is a contemporary graffiti stencil artist from England, whose identity is unknown.  His work randomly pops up and has a political/surrealistic/comic slant. I included a video of the highly controversial into he did for The Simpsons recently.     

Non Western Cultures Contemporary Influence

Posted in Uncategorized on November 14, 2010 by nattier

After thinking about this for just a few minutes the first thing that came to my mind was Anime and Manga.  I myself don’t really get into Anime or Manga, but I do read a lot of graphic novels.  Some of which are hugely influenced by Manga.  I am a fan of the Manga drawings.  In my opinion they are beautiful, over exaggerated, and very fun.  But, Anime and Manga has become a huge commercial business in America over the last few years.  There are cartoons, video games, and comics. The first two photos I uploaded are 2 of the more popular Pokemon and Sailor Moon and the third is the animation  I prefer.

Tarquin & Lucretia 1578-80

Posted in Uncategorized on November 8, 2010 by nattier

Tarquin & Lucretia by Tintoretto 1578-80

The painting of Tarquin & Lucretia is based on Roman history.  Lucretia was a virtuous matron who was raped by Sextus Tarquinius, who was the son of the king of Rome.  This hideous act caused the monarchy to be overthrown and the people established a republic around 510 b.c.  Sadly, Lucretia committed suicide, to save her family from dishonor.  (Courtesy of wall text next to the painting.)

The painting of Tarquin & Lucretia shows a struggle taking place between a man and a woman.  They are struggling upon a bed with silk pink and black bedsheets in a tangle.  Lucretia, the woman, is naked except for a white sheer cloth wrapping around parts of her body.  The sheer cloth wraps around her left leg, covering her vagina, and continues wrapping around her waist and below her breasts. Although this covers parts of her every part of her shows through.  Her pearls are in the midst of breaking and falling to the floor.  Lucretia is trying to break free from Tarquin’s grip.  She stands on her right leg, while using her left leg to push off from the bed and her left arm is pushing his head away.  At Lucretia’s feet is a a dagger, which represents Tarquin’s threats and her suicide.  The sheets are strewn about the bed showing this intense struggle between Tarquin & Lucretia.  Tarquin’s right leg is bent on the bed and his left leg is stretched out in the motion of pulling Lucretia back onto the bed.  His arms are also extended, pulling Lucretia by her waist and garments.  In the left foreground of the painting is a bronze statue that has toppled to the ground.  This statue was a post holding the now fallen canopy up along with three other bronze statues surrounding the bed.  Next to the statue is a white pillow in the action of falling to the floor.  This painting uses intense colors and the use of space in this painting is striking.  There isn’t any negative space.  The motion taking place is intense and painted beautifully.

Art and Politics By Ruthee

Posted in Uncategorized on November 5, 2010 by group8ball

Well, when I think about politics and the arts the first thing that comes to mind is the funnies. The funnies, or also known as the newspaper’s daily comics, are usually filled with jokes of your political problems. I find them quite entertaining and it is also the main reason why I even bother picking up a newspaper.


Spanish Dancer by Nathalija Gontcharova c.1916

Posted in Uncategorized on November 1, 2010 by rehirst

Hanging in the Modern Wing of the Art Institute of Chicago is the painting by Nathalija Gontcharova called Spanish Dancer. This painting, done in 1916 is an example of Russian Modern Art. It is an oil panting done on canvas and hangs at nearly 6.5 feet by 3 feet. The painting shows a woman adorned in white clothing with what seems to be lace detail. She stands in white high heels on a light brown floor with a brown background showing behind her head and shoulders as well. Her head, in profile, is shown to have some sort of adornment on top and is backed by fabric that is flowing from her arms. Her arms and hands seem to encircle her head in a somewhat distorted manner. It is difficult to determine which arm is her right or left and it can be inferred that she is in some dance pose, due to the title of the piece.

The main focus and emphasis is the dancer woman as she is placed in the very center of the painting and she consumes the entire space. Although the woman is painted so large in scale, the artist allows for some understanding of the space she stands in with breaks in the brown background, giving the feeling of a room. The darker value of the upper left corner gives the illusion of a receding room while the lighter left upper corner seems to be closer to the viewer. Also the line in front of the dancers feet is at a slight angle left giving a sense of perspective that opens up the implied room.

Upon first setting eyes on this painting I instantly focused on the detail of the drapery and then followed in a counter-clockwise motion around the dancers head. This sense of movement is due to diagonal lines the drape of the skirt and the diagonal lines created by the fabric that seem to spiral out of the dancers head. The size of the dress and fabric create such a proportion that the dancer seems so tiny while her movements she is doing are immense.

The thing that initially struck me about this painting is the beautiful way that Gontcharova portrays the draping of the fabric. Thinking about the dances native of Spain and the way they utilize costume and fabric, it makes sense that the artist paid such attention to her rendering of it. It holds an influence that clearly comes from Cubism; the way it almost appears that the viewer is seeing the dancer from different sides at once. The rigidity of her arm poses as well as the draping of the fabric in her skirt and around her head seem to be influenced by a simplified style. The draping on her fabric is reduced down to even folds and drapes that fall from the back of the dancers dress and wrap around the front. The hem of her skirt is simplified into even right angles and a symmetrical weight of drapery. Often times, other artists in history have spent so much time focusing on every fold and crease of drapery, being sure to capture the exact way that light hits it. Gontcharova in this case handled drapery with such a simple but definite way. Although there is a simplification of such a soft and detailed drapery, the artist still has indicated that there is great detail on the fabric and has painted the detail of the lace into parts of the drape. Spanish dancing also is so quickly paced, and involves a lot of whipping of fabric around, the dancer subject is captured a brief snap-shot and holds this pose with poise and grace.

After a slight bit of research I discovered that Gontcharova became a designer of ballet costume in her later years. She began designing sets and costumes in 1915 and this painting is dated 1916. Her ability to capture such movement, grace and emotion in her rendering of fabric in this painting might be explained by the close attention she had been paying to dancers in the recent times.

Malachi Neuman:Scenes from the life of John the Baptist

Posted in Uncategorized on November 1, 2010 by group8ball

Malachi Neuman
Art History 2: Monday 12:30 p.m.
Writing Assignment one

I decided to pick an early renaissance painting. Realy truly medeival done in 1490-1495 by italian artist Bartolommeo di Giovani who was born in 1465 and died in 1501. The name of the painting is called Scenes from the life of Saint John the Baptist which is actually a tempora painting done on a panel.The mosts striking thing to me about this painting is the busyness that seems to be going on within the painting, the bright colors accompanied with the many different periods depicted in the painting causes my eyes to just jump around. Kind of like a panaramic point of veiw.I love the fact that the painting is so bright also.I like the pastel colors, but what i dont get is the house or bedrom that is the focul point of the picture. It kind of throws me off, it seems quite unrealstic. I geuss that is somewhat the point of the picture thoug. The open bedroom is the central point inwhich i look out into the rest of the picture , yet the bright pasel colors give the painting a sort of heavenly aura.

The picture itself is quite modest in size,
74 x 150.4 cm (29 3/16 x 59 3/16 in.) to be exact. I like the size of the painting and the overlook . By it being tempora it’s a bit damaged but its not damaged to horribly and is presrved quite well by the institute. Certainly if this painting was to be copied, or repainted , and reprinted it wouold take away from the quality of the painiting. Although it might look a bit better seeing as though it would be done in a better paint or printed on paper, or just better materials period. It still woyuldnt give the awe inspiring look the original poses no one van paint like Giovani , well they probably can but the authenticity would be dismanteled as well as the look that he himself had in mind for this painiting.

The artwork lets me look back into the past, a kind of glimpse into the life of the one and only John the baptist.How he lived and a few things that made him a saint to all.I feel as if im looking into a perfect beings legacy although he wasnt a perfec being he was close enough being the actual prophet of and cousin to Jesus Christ. The Coherence of the painting is asserted through the color and palcement of the figures within the paiting.the different, elementary yet variational uses pf perspective give the painting an extra element as well. Although I love the bright repetitive color scheme of the different robes and cloths in the painting, it is alos the downfall of the painting. its alot of pink and green in this painting it reminds me of the sorority AKA. What puzzles me aboutr the painiting is why he made the color scheme so repetive, i like it but it also does the most in a weird way.

I feel that he used the same colors because of the bright look that it gave saint John, it made him look heavenly and full of life. It also shows us how dead the world was taht he lived in contratss to the spirit of life and of GOD that was within him. By me experiencing and be attracted to the briliant color scheme of this early renassaince painting i could infer that it was purposely painted in that manner to show us, the veiwers that john lit up the room or the world every where he went whether it was in a bad way or a good wya, he made sure that it was known that he was in the mist.